Conditional Solidarity: Social Class, Experiences of the Economic Crisis, and Welfare Attitudes in Europe
|Sachweh_Social Class, Experiences of the Economic Crisis, and Welfare Attitudes in Europe_2018.pdf||1.32 MB||Adobe PDF||View/Open|
The aftermath of the Global Financial and Economic Crisis of 2007/2008 turned out as a veritable “stress test” for European welfare states. Aiming to stabilize citizens’ living conditions and mitigate socio-economic hardship, European governments have engaged in active crisis management. Yet, the protective capacities of European welfare states vary, as does individuals’ exposure to crisis-induced social risks. Hence, the crisis has impacted countries and the members of different social classes unequally. Against this backdrop, this paper asks how Europeans’ perceptions of the personal impact of the crisis are associated with their welfare attitudes, focusing on variations between social classes and across nations. Using cross-sectional Eurobarometer survey data from 2010 for 27 European countries, I find that perceived crisis impact is associated with greater support for welfare state responsibility and redistribution. However, this association is not homogeneous but moderated by an individual’s class position as well as national economic conditions and social spending levels. More specifically, on the individual level, perceived crisis impact is associated with more favourable welfare attitudes not only among its traditional supporters—such as the working class or the unemployed—but also among its traditional opponents, notably the self-employed. Furthermore, where social spending is higher, welfare state support is less strongly related to perceived crisis impact, suggesting that more encompassing welfare states mitigate the subjective impacts of the crisis. However, redistribution appears to be slightly more contested between those affected and those not affected by the crisis under better economic conditions. Given the challenges facing welfare states across Europe, it remains to be seen how stable a basis of popular support can be formed on these grounds.
|Keywords:||Attitudes; Great Recession; Europe; Social Class; Redistribution; Welfare state||Issue Date:||2018||Publisher:||Springer||Journal/Edited collection:||Social Indicators Research||Start page:||47||End page:||76||Type:||Artikel/Aufsatz||ISSN:||1573-0921||Secondary publication:||yes||DOI:||10.26092/elib/2215||URN:||urn:nbn:de:gbv:46-elib68893||Institution:||andere Institution|
|Appears in Collections:||Forschungsdokumente|
checked on Jun 6, 2023
checked on Jun 6, 2023
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